Assistant Project Scientist in Chemical Engineering

University of California Davis Department of Chemical Engineering

United States

Assistant Project Scientist - McDonald/Nandi Lab 2020

Job #JPF03843

Recruitment Period

Open date: October 27th, 2020

Next review date: Tuesday, Nov 10, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Friday, Dec 18, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


An Assistant Project Scientist research position is immediately available at the McDonald-Nandi laboratory (, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of California, Davis to work on the projects that involve transgenically/transiently producing, quantifying, and characterizing pharmaceutical proteins in lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and tobacco (Nicotiana benthamiana). The successful candidate should have outstanding and appropriate research experience and should provide evidence of effective and innovative research in the areas listed below. The duration of this position is initially for one year and extendable depending on performance and availability of funding.

Specific tasks include but are not limited to:
• Grow (preferably hydroponically) and maintain healthy lettuce and Nicotiana benthamiana plants.
• Perform genetic infiltration and bombardment of target genes (and perhaps other methods) to produce both transgenic plants and transient expression in plants/leaves. Design of experiments to optimize speed of production, quantitative analyses and quality of recombinant proteins made in plants.
• Grow selected transgenic lettuce lines expressing target proteins both in greenhouse and controlled environmental facilities.
• Draft amendments to the lab Biological Use Authorization as needed.
• Perform appropriate assays (ELISA, Western blots, and activity) to measure specific productivity of target recombinant proteins.
• Generate a sufficient amount of viable seeds and leaves for purification and further characterization of the target recombinant proteins in crude extract or after purification (e.g. SDS-PAGE, Western, ELISA, amino acid sequence, activity assay, CD analysis, etc.).
• Optimization of extraction and purification (>95%) of target molecules using centrifugation, TFF and AKTA systems and standardization of the protocols for scalability.
• Supervise undergraduate and graduate students working on related projects in the laboratory.
• Interface with collaborators within the university and outside of the university to further research objectives.
• Prepare monthly research update presentations, drafts of journal publications, maintain laboratory notebooks and data, identify related research and fellowship funding opportunities, contribute to proposals, present research findings at conferences and internal meetings.

Please be aware that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, campus in-person operations have been restricted to essential personnel only. All academic and scholarly activities are being conducted remotely for the time being. As a result, interviews, seminars, and additional consultations may occur via remote platforms, including Zoom, to which we will provide access.

The position is open until filled; but to assure full consideration, applications should be submitted no later than 30 days of publication of this advertisement, for a start date as soon as possible/situation permits.

We strongly recommend that all candidates visit our website dedicated to this search for additional information about how their application materials, including their Statement of Contributions to Diversity, will be used by the Search Committee in our screening and review process. The link is

UC Davis is an affirmative action / equal opportunity employer, and is dedicated to recruiting a diverse faculty community. We welcome all qualified applicants to apply, including women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans.


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter
  • Statement of Research (Optional)
  • Statement of Teaching (Optional)
  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion documented in the application file will be used to evaluate applicants. Visit for guidelines about writing a statement and why one is requested.
Reference requirements
  • 3-5 required (contact information only)

In your application, please refer to


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